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(10 Posts)
Honeybadger83 Wed 22-Apr-15 18:03:17

I would desperately love to keep chickens in the garden, but I don't have anyone I could ask to shut them away/let them out if I needed to go away overnight.
Do any of the chicken keepers have any advice they could give? Are there ways around it, or should I just give up my dream?

tormentil Wed 22-Apr-15 18:06:43

Keep them in a well fenced enclosure with a chicken wire top.

oneflewoutofthecrazynest Wed 22-Apr-15 19:49:07

If you wanted to free range you could install an electronic door shutter, the girls would take themselves off to bed at night smile

Honeybadger83 Wed 22-Apr-15 20:00:01

It's just a small urban garden, but we fenced in with no access except through the terrace.
We'd be looking at a small house with an attached run, and probably three hens

thereinmadnesslies Wed 22-Apr-15 20:28:17

We don't lock our hens away at night. They have an attached run and they just put themselves to bed and come out again in the morning.

maybetomorrow22 Sun 26-Apr-15 21:38:02

We have ours fenced in, with extra chicken wire around it (Mr Fox did visit a few years ago). We don't shut them in at night but they are well enclosed.

When we go away we fill up with water/food and get family to pop by and top up feed and water and to collect eggs.

We do, on occasion have rats as a result of the chickens. We have bait boxes down at all times but the chickens can't access them

OneEpisode Wed 05-Aug-15 20:45:22

Hi sorry to crash into the thread. Do you definitely have enough room for hens? Maybe allow 100 square foot per hen per week and after each week move the hens before the ground is trashed/chemically changed. Don't return to the same land for a year. So you'd need 156,000 square foot of garden available for hens, plus any garden space for any other pets/humans.
Hens wake at dawn which is very early in summer, we don't get up that early so we don't shut them up on summer nights. we hope they are protected by their run. We have ours electrified against foxes etc.

SweepTheHalls Wed 05-Aug-15 20:47:03

We have an electronic door which is brilliant.

ingeniousidiot Mon 17-Aug-15 15:18:42

156,000 square feet for 3 hens? How on earth has that been calculated? And the ground being 'chemically changed'? Don't return to the same land for a year? None of this makes sense, where have you got your information from?

Get a couple of chickens in a secure pen, do you really have no neighbours anywhere? I'm sure someone will do the occasional chicken duty in exchange from some newly laid eggs.

OneEpisode Mon 17-Aug-15 21:05:54

Hi sorry the 100 sq ft per hen per week is based on the hens being on grass long term. The OP might prefer to buy/obtain sawdust/auboise etc & then clean it out when soiled & send to landfill/compost but that is sometimes trickier in a terraced garden. The 100 sq ft per week is pretty accurate it's based on the traditional max hens per acre long term before you have to lime the land to counteract the urea. Typo mess up on the maths though; 100 sq ft per week times 3 hens times 52 weeks per year is 15600 not 156000 sq feet. Still a lot of land for most terraced homes though. HTH

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